Today The Beatles returned to Knole Park in Sevenoaks, Kent, where a few days previously they had worked on the “Strawberry Fields Forever” promo film, to film some more footage for “Penny Lane.” They rode horses, sat down for drinks, and were handed their musical instruments by butlers in fancy dress.

I already posted the video of the finished product the other day, but what the hell, embedding is free.

Here are a few things I noticed from a repeat viewing:

For the most part this film is not overly literal, which must have been tempting, given the cinematic nature of Paul’s lyrics. The establishing shots of the barber pole and Penny Lane bus are a bit on the nose though.

I’m not sure which is a better coat, George’s lush, magnificent fur or Paul’s amazing technicolor overcoat. John and Ringo need to step up their coat game.

John at this point was rocking the sideburns and the Fu Manchu. Not many people can pull off that look; I’m not sure even John can, to be honest, but it’s a valiant effort.

George’s beard is rather satanic.

Paul looks most comfortable on a horse. George and John appear to be having trouble with theirs, and I’m not sure Ringo even knows he’s on a horse. Which is another way of being comfortable, I guess.

No attempt is made to have the boys’ mouth movements match up with the song, which may be because this was technically hard to do at the time. Or it may be an early example of a band considering themselves above the indignity of lip-syncing.

I’m sure the accountants weren’t happy about the expense of setting up that stage in the park that never gets used.

It seems a bit cold for the Champagne that they find on the table and in fact everyone is seen drinking tea instead.

Somebody get that horse out of the frame!

When the butler hands Paul a bass he holds it as if he’s never seen one before and doesn’t know what it’s for.

I don’t think John’s upsetting the table was planned; he’d had enough of filming in the bitter cold. He looks pretty gangster as he strolls off in the last shot. “Right, that’s it for Penny Lane, then.”

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